High stress and heartbreak place heavy burden on veterinarians | View AVMA's wellness and peer-assistance toolkit | How veterinarians help pet owners through loss
September 20, 2016
Animal Health SmartBrief
News for animal health professionals
Veterinary Medicine Update
High stress and heartbreak place heavy burden on veterinarians
Over 1 in 6 veterinarians in the US has thought about committing suicide, according to the CDC, and many said they commonly experience feelings of hopelessness, depression and other mental health issues. The causes include having high stress, dealing with ill and dying animals, facing difficult pet owners and having high debt paired with relatively low pay compared with dentists and physicians. Veterinarians who have found balance in their own lives urge their colleagues to pursue interests outside the clinic, develop relaxation strategies and raise awareness of the challenges veterinarians face.
The Boston Globe (tiered subscription model) (9/19) 
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How veterinarians help pet owners through loss
How veterinarians help pet owners through loss.
Veterinarians play an important role in how clients handle the pain of loss when a pet must be euthanized, according to Ontario Veterinary College researcher Alisha Matte, who is conducting a survey to better understand veterinarians' euthanasia practices. So far, she's found that veterinarians are invested in easing clients' grief by personalizing the experience and using more delicate terminology when discussing the process.
CBC.ca (Canada) (9/18) 
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Pet obesity problem fueling arthritis claims, UK insurer finds
Pet obesity problem fueling arthritis claims, UK insurer finds.
Obesity among pets may constitute an epidemic, and it's causing an uptick in other health problems, including a soaring number of claims for arthritis, UK-based pet insurer Animal Friends found. Veterinarian Sean Wensley, president of the British Veterinary Association, said people are increasingly choosing good-quality foods but feeding in excessive quantities as well as giving pets high-calorie human foods as treats.
The Telegraph (London) (tiered subscription model) (9/18) 
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Are dogs the only mammals that process speech sort of like humans?
A recent study found that dogs respond to intonation as well as words themselves to interpret human speech, and they do so using similar brain activity to humans. Researchers say the underlying capability they detected in dogs may be present in other mammals, since it likely dates back to a common ancestor of humans and dogs, but other mammals -- such as cats -- simply may not be as interested in tuning into human speech.
PRI (9/18) 
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Children may not know to be wary of frightened dogs
Research presented at a British Psychological Society conference found that young children are able to recognize an angry dog, but may be less able to recognize happy or frightened dogs, and they are unaware that a frightened dog may unsafe. The study suggests dog-bite education should focus on the signs and dangers of fearful dogs, said researcher Sarah Rose.
St. Louis Post-Dispatch/HealthDay News (9/17) 
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Animal News
Rattlesnakes still pose a threat to pets, Colo. officials say
Colorado wildlife officials are reminding pet owners that rattlesnakes pose a pet health risk through November. Colorado Springs resident Jeff Marshall learned that the hard way after his service dog Eris was bitten on the nose by a rattlesnake, although the dog is recovering thanks to prompt emergency veterinary care.
KKTV-TV (Colorado Springs) (9/19) 
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Veterinarians marry with beloved ill dog at their side
Veterinarians Kelly O'Connell and James Garvin recently got married, and despite a brain tumor and failing health, Charlie the dog survived long enough to join the wedding party. Charlie was able to walk down the aisle but had to be carried back, and the couple said goodbye to him nine days later. "The amount of love these people have for their animals is enough to restore anyone's faith in humanity," wrote wedding photographer Jen Dziuvenis.
KING-TV (Seattle) (9/19) 
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Other News
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Around the Office
How customers react to prices
How customers respond to product prices
(Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
Customers often react emotionally to product prices, writes Geoffrey James. He shares 10 factors to keep in mind to manage these reactions and build your business.
Inc. online (free registration) (9/19) 
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AVMA Today
Zika virus and animals FAQ
With the rise of Zika virus in the United States, many people are concerned not just about the risk of human infection, but also the possibility of animals being infected as well. Can pets get Zika? Can they carry it within their bodies and pass it on to humans? Visit the AVMA's website to learn more about the potential risk that Zika virus poses to animals.
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The first step toward success is taken when you refuse to be a captive of the environment in which you first find yourself.
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The news summaries appearing in Animal Health SmartBrief are based on original information from news organizations and are produced by SmartBrief, Inc., an independent e-mail newsletter publisher. The AVMA is not responsible for the content of sites that are external to the AVMA. Linking to a website does not constitute an endorsement by the AVMA of the site or the information presented on the site. Questions and comments should be directed to SmartBrief at avma@smartbrief.com.
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